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Alumni in Action

UW at 175: WSB Alums Share Their Badger Love Stories

By Chris Malina

February 13, 2024

Some lucky UW–Madison graduates leave campus with much more than a degree…

They leave with relationships strong enough to last a lifetime. Whether it’s a best friend or a romantic partner, many alumni have their own Badger love story—and really, what’s better than that?

With Valentine’s Day upon us, and UW–Madison continuing its 175th anniversary celebration, five Business Badgers share memories of meeting their BFFs and BAEs on campus.

Three for Three

“We recently celebrated our third wedding! After meeting in Grainger Hall during our MBA programs, we got engaged in September 2020 and had a small legal ceremony in March 2021. We were finally able to celebrate with friends and family—first in Lima, Peru, and then in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. We were joined by fellow Badgers, friends, and family at all three weddings!”

—Karl Krueger (MBA ’19) and Vania Arias (MBA ’18)

Bucky Badger and a heart that reads "Business of Love."

Around the World

“My favorite memory is meeting lifelong friends from all over the globe, including but not limited to India, Indonesia, and Russia. Before I went to UW–Madison, I figured the majority of the students were from the Midwest. I didn’t realize how diverse the school is and how it really pulls students from all over the U.S. and internationally.”

—Paul Laughlin (MBA ’17)

A Marketing Match

“I met my future wife in the atrium of Grainger Hall in January 1996. We had mutual friends in the school of business. She was in the A.C. Nielsen Center for Marketing Analytics and Insights, and I was in the Center for Brand and Product Management, and we were discussing internship opportunities for the upcoming summer. We got engaged five years later near Observatory Hill as alumni.”

—Boyd Miller (MBA ’96)

Heart that reads "Investing in You"

Friendship and Fraternity

“My favorite memory is meeting my lifelong friends in the southeast dorms. We re-chaptered the Delta Tau Delta fraternity in 1982 and it has tied us all together—men and women—over these last 42 years. I’m lucky to have such great friends.”

—Steve Stiloski (BS ’87, MS ’89)

More Than a Mentor

“As a first-year MBA student, I was paired with a second-year MBA student and mentor in the A.C. Nielsen Center. I met him for the first time in a breakout room on the fourth floor of Grainger Hall and immediately knew I was in trouble. I liked him. Fast forward, we have been married for four years, have a fur baby, and live in Seattle thanks to the careers we found through WSB.”

—Susannah Maiken (MBA ’18)


This story is part 3 in our ongoing alumni memories series. You can read more from WSB alums, including their favorite football moments and academic memories.

You can also join the anniversary celebration on UW–Madison’s 175th anniversary website, and by using #UW175 on social media.


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